Internal Audit Discovered 65 Unauthorized Checks
Ordered To Pay $73,521.68 In Restitution
Six Months Jail Sentence
Seniors in assisted care or skilled nursing facilities face the risk of financial elder abuse by dishonest staff members similar to the risks seniors living at home do from dishonest in-home caregivers. Theft of cash and jewelry from a senior’s home by a dishonest caregiver or a nursing home room from a dishonest staff member are clear examples. But unscrupulous business managers, administrators, staff and bookkeepers may use access to confidential information (Social Security numbers or bank account numbers) to steal from unwary residents or use trust money on deposit with the home to make purchases for themselves. All such financial elder abuse is against the law and grounds for civil liability. See Penal Code § 368 (crime of financial elder abuse) and Cal. Welf. & Inst. Code § 15610.30 (definition of financial elder abuse). California law broadly defines what constitutes financial elder abuse:
(a) “Financial abuse” of an elder or dependent adult occurs when a person or entity does any of the following:
(1) Takes, secretes, appropriates, obtains, or retains real or personal property of an elder or dependent adult for a wrongful use or with intent to defraud, or both.
(2) Assists in taking, secreting, appropriating, obtaining, or retaining real or personal property of an elder or dependent adult for a wrongful use or with intent to defraud, or both.
(3) Takes, secretes, appropriates, obtains, or retains, or assists in taking, secreting, appropriating, obtaining, or retaining, real or personal property of an elder or dependent adult by undue influence, as defined in Section 15610.70.
Cal. Welf. & Inst. Code § 15610.30.
Evans Law Firm. Inc. represents victims and their families suffering any form of financial elder abuse. We pursue all persons responsible, including the owners, administrators and staff directly responsible or as supervisors with a duty to protect residents from any kind of abuse. Call us today at (415)441-8669 if any senior loved one has suffered any kind of financial elder abuse in Orange County, Los Angeles or elsewhere in California.
Sentencing Of Nursing Home Business Manager For Financial Elder Abuse
The Business Office Manager of a skilled nursing and rehabilitation center was recently sentenced for embezzlement of funds from several facility residents. Her arrest had followed an internal audit at the facility which uncovered numerous suspicious transactions. According to court records, the audit found 65 unauthorized trust checks were written from resident trust accounts to five unknown individuals between March 13, 2017, and September 16, 2021. The investigation revealed that the suspect wrote the checks and had individuals cash them for her. According to the complaint, the business manager was not authorized by the facility to write the checks, or receive any money from them, as the funds were placed in trust for the residents of the facility.
How To Protect Nursing Home Resident From Financial Elder Abuse
In the reported case, the fraud was discovered only because the facility performed an internal audit of its residents’ accounts. Regular monitoring of an older loved one’s bank accounts, IRAs, cash, valuables, and credit card statements is the front line for protecting the senior from financial abuse. Never ever allow the senior to give a caregiver or a nursing home administrator a Power of Attorney or authorize them to sign checks. Make sure checks, important papers, account numbers and Social Security numbers are not accessible to those persons. Run a check through the California Department of Health to see if any citations have ever issued to the home for any manner of abuse. Redirect the senior’s mail to your own address so nursing home staff or strangers do not have access to the resident’s mail. Keep an eye on where their Social Security and pension money is directly deposited; sometimes abusers try to re-route those deposits to their own accounts.
If you suspect any financial elder abuse of an older loved one in Orange County, Los Angeles or elsewhere in California call Ingrid M. Evans and the other financial elder abuse attorneys at Evans Law Firm, Inc. today. Ingrid and our other attorneys can be reached at (415) 441-8669, or email us at <a href=”mailto:email@example.com”>firstname.lastname@example.org</a>. We handle all types of elder abuse cases throughout California.
 Evans Law Firm, Inc. was not involved in the reported case in any way.